Employee vs. Independent Contractor
Federal and state tax and labor laws require Kennesaw State University (KSU) to ensure that individuals who provide services are properly classified as an employee or an independent contractor. Proper classification of an individual will determine Kennesaw State University’s tax withholding and reporting obligations.
Individuals who perform services for KSU are presumed to be employees unless the relationship, supported by documentation, satisfies the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and state law standards for an independent contractor status. Individuals who receive a Form W-2 from KSU should be paid as an employee for all services provided and typically should not also receive a Form 1099 from KSU.
KSU’s Office of Procurement works collaboratively with the Office of Compliance, Division of Legal Affairs, and Department of Human Resources to determine the classification categories of payments to individuals.
Please see the University's Consulting Services Policy for more information.
Classification of an Employee
An employee is a person hired through Kennesaw State University’s Department of Human Resources and paid via Payroll. KSU controls and directs this person's activities, both in terms of what must be done and how it must be done. An employee may be classified as a permanent full-time employee, part-time employee or as a temporary employee. Generally, employees will always be paid through the payroll system even if the duties they perform are unrelated to their primary role.
Some Examples of Characteristics of an Employee
- Performs duties dictated or controlled by others
- Is given training for work to be done
- Teaches a course from which students may receive academic credit
- Performs trade type duties, e.g., clerical, janitorial, grounds keeping services, lab technicians.
Please note that when KSU engages a temporary agency to provide trade type services, the agency, and not the individual, will be considered an independent contractor.
Classification of an Independent Contractor
An independent contractor (also referred to as contractor, consultant, freelancer, etc.) may be an individual or sole proprietor that renders services to the general public. An independent contractor is responsible for the means and methods for completing a task based on specifications in a contract with KSU. An independent contractor generally has multiple clients, maintains a separate workplace, is not supervised or controlled by a KSU employee, and does not receive KSU benefits.
Examples of characteristics of an independent contractor:
- Operates under a business name
- May have his/her own employees
- Maintains a separate business bank account
- Advertises his/her business services
- Invoices for work completed
- Has own tools and sets own hours
- Keeps business records
What is the consequence of misclassification?
Misclassification of an individual as an independent contractor may have a number of costly legal and financial consequences for the University. Consequently, it is essential that proper characterization of an individual be determined before any agreements, contracts (oral or written) or payments are made. The fundamental difference between an employee and independent contractor from a tax point of view is that an employer withholds employment taxes, and pays FICA taxes on its employees.
If an independent contractor is discovered to meet the legal definition of an employee, the University may be liable for:
- Wages that should have been paid to them under the Fair Labor Standards Act, including overtime and minimum wage
- Back taxes and penalties for federal and state income taxes, Social Security, Medicare and unemployment
- Any misclassified injured employee's workers' compensation benefits
- Employee benefits, including holiday pay, health insurance, retirement, etc.
Classification of Non-US Tax Resident Individuals
Individuals who are not U.S. citizens or permanent legal residents (green card holders) may be subject to a variety of restrictions on employment or independent contractor services. All non-employee service providers who perform a service on U.S. soil must initiate a GLACIER tax compliance record, including a review of immigration documentation, prior to initiation of a requisition, an invitation, a service agreement, or verbal commitment to make payment. Please contact email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org for additional guidance.
Kennesaw State University Policies and Procedures
Invoice Payment FAQ
For all invoices associated with a Purchase Order (PO), please submit the invoice via email to email@example.com and indicate the PO number that the invoice is being paid against. You do not need to submit an OwlPay payment to pay for an invoice that has a PO associated with it, as you will be encumbering funds twice.
For any invoices that do not have a PO associated with them, please submit an OwlPay payment if the purchase is not allowable on P-Card. A PO cannot be issued after the purchase has been made as this is an after-the-fact purchase.
eProcurement (ePro) FAQs
- Accounting Date Error
- Adding Lines to Requisitions
- Changing Ship To Location
- Clearing Browser Cache
- Deleting Lines from Requisition Error
- Error - Account Budget_Ref
- Error - Fund_Code ProjectID
- Error - Item Unavailable When Clicking Add to Cart
- Error - Missing Requisition (Manage Requisitions)
- GA First Marketplace - Issue Requisition Error
- Receiving Via Purchasing
- Requisition Statuses
- Startup Screen Issues
- Un-Receiving a PO
Exempt commodities or services do not require competitive bidding. However, it is expected that State employees will exercise due diligence in expending State funds by seeking fair and reasonable prices for all purchases. This may at times mean obtaining quotes from vendors for comparative purposes to ensure excellent quality and fair pricing.
The State Exempt list is specific and lists exemptions in terms of commodity codes or NIGP codes. (NIGP is the National Institute of Government Purchasing). Only the items (and codes) listed are exempt. Related or similar items are not exempt if they are not listed.
If you have any questions or are unsure as to whether a commodity or service is exempt, please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
List of Statewide Convenience and Mandatory Contracts
A complete list of State contracts can be found on the Team Georgia Marketplace. Please note that the User Name and Password are both “tgmguest" (all lowercase and without quotes), as shown below:
What is the threshold for purchases made during the fiscal year that would require competitive bidding?
A competitive solicitation is required for any purchases $25,000 or more that are non-exempt and are not already on Statewide Contract. This does not include Public Works Contracts, which is anything $50,000 or more.
How do I know if KSU has a contract for a certain Supplier or a certain type of goods?
You may reach out to Procurement either by email, email@example.com, or by phone, 470.578.6214
How long does a contract take to be awarded?The length of time for a contract to be awarded to a supplier varies depending on the complexity of the solicitation. We would ask that you allow at least eight weeks for RFQs and sixteen weeks for RFPs. Again, the more complex the RFQ or RFP is, the longer it can take.
I have an emergency on campus and the cost is expected to be over $25,000 ($50,000 for Public Works). Is there a way to expedite the process?Per DOAS rules, emergencies do not require the use of a competitive solicitation, but they do require notification to Procurement within 24 hours so that we may coordinate with DOAS to allow work to begin immediately. Please reach out to Procurement as soon as possible to avoid any violations of State rules.
What is an E-Verify Affidavit and why is it needed?
Effective July 1, 2013, an E-Verify affidavit is required:
When a public employer makes a purchase that includes services or labor, and the total amount of a purchase exceeds $2,499.99.
For more information on E-Verify, please click here.